Owners of industrial companies nationwide, including in California, are bound by federal laws to provide safe work environments and comply with prescribed safety regulations. Unfortunately, some employers fail to prioritize safety, which often results in fatal workplace injuries. This may have been the case at a glass factory in another state where a worker lost his life earlier this month.

An incident report shows that three workers were in an enclosed tank that was 20 feet high, and they were busy with repairs on the tank that had been out of order for some time. The workers reportedly made small holes in the structure to use as escape routes in the event of an emergency. The ceiling above the tank was a brick structure that collapsed onto the workers.

Two workers managed to escape through the holes in time, but the heavy load of bricks landed on top of the third person. A long-time employee of the company who had been involved in such repairs in the past said this fatal accident did not come as a surprise. The report indicated that the Occupational Safety and Health Administration will be investigating the worker’s death to determine whether it was caused by safety violations.

When fatal workplace injuries cause the death of a loved one, many stumbling blocks are placed in the path of the surviving family members. Along with the emotional hardship at this difficult time, dependents have to face end-of-life expenses and the sudden loss of income. Death benefits may be claimed from the California workers’ compensation insurance program that typically covers the cost of a funeral and burial. Also, lost income compensation — based on the deceased worker’s average weekly wages — will be awarded to assist with day-to-day living expenses.

Source: myfox28columbus.com, “Worker killed after ceiling collapse at Lancaster plant“, Csaba Sukosd, James Jackson, Mike McCarthy, April 4, 2016